emerging economies

Deserting debt-laden, recession-racked North Atlantic and Japan for the fast-growing emerging market world may have been irresistible for some investors but many others still remain timid. Why? It may be a case of "hard power" versus "soft power".

Well, we've always had soft power, which seems to have been despite the government, not because of it. We have the soft power of Bollywood, Indian cuisine, fashion, yoga and the Indian brain that has done so well with science, computers and so on

Alexis-Marchay Karklins, co-leader of the center of emerging markets at Ernst & Young, said that “recent trends have made the deployment and use of soft power crucial and it is not surprising that the BRIC countries (Brazil, Russia, India and China) dominate this index.

Enticed by the economic possibilities in the region, Colombia is courting Asia the only way it knows how: Through the art of salsa dancing. By sending pairs of professional dancers shimmering across the Asia Pacific, the Latin American country hopes to forge closer social and cultural ties with a major slice of the region, from Japan to South Korea, China, Southeast Asia, Australia and New Zealand.

All of these qualities have transformed Turkey into an attractive place for business, media, artists, diplomats, students and non-governmental organisations from around the world. Turkey's ever-increasing soft power is becoming one of its most significant traits, which we will continue to use to enhance regional and global peace.

A host of world leaders trooped into India over the last few months, including Russia's president on Tuesday, to strengthen relations with Asia's third-largest economy, attracted by its booming market and growing diplomatic heft.

The visit this week to Tehran by Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva was a rare show of personal, high-stakes diplomacy by a pair of world leaders.